Penalties, dropped passes hurt FAU football team

Palm Beach Post Staff Writer

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Florida Atlantic returned to practice Tuesday hoping to ride the momentum created by its victory at Western Kentucky on Saturday that snapped a four-game losing streak.

To do that, two areas must be cleaned up: penalties and dropped passes.

The Owls had 11 penalties for 100 yards Saturday and now are among the most penalized teams in the nation with 7.29 per game.

"That's a very disheartening thing," coach Howard Schnellenberger said. "We can't continue to get 15-yard penalties. Five yards are bad enough but they can be overcome. Ten or 15-yard penalties become very harmful to sustain an offense."

Receivers dropped at least four passes Saturday, mostly when wide open. Two probably would have been touchdowns.

"That's just adversity we have to overcome," quarterback Rusty Smith said. "That's going to happen.

"Receivers, tight ends and running backs will drop a ball. I'm going to throw an interception. I'm going to (fumble) coming out of half time. Every year you have things you have to overcome. I guess its drops this year."